Jul 022008

It’s getting a little to think up what to include for my journal entries, but there is still a lot.


At the school there are 9 levels that students can be assigned to. I’m assigned to levels 4, 5, and 7. The texts we are using are in American English and it’s interesting other English speakers will spell certain words differently. While teaching for the most part is going well, it really is difficult to get motivated and plan for some of the irrelevant/uninteresting topics. As we do have some flexibility in teaching, I decided to take the liberty and skip to the section in level 7 on vacations, and had the students give me some ideas for the one week vacation coming up this month. We handed out a questionnaire to the students this week asking about the teaching and the program in general. We should get their feedback by the end of the week, which I’m looking forward to.

Volunteering notes

So just when I said the perpetual sweating went away it’s beginning to make a slight comeback.

For those staying at the volunteer house, if you’re wondering how much money to bring, first take into account the following: visa costs are around $100.00 US, if you want a cell phone you’re looking at $45 and up, and the trip to Karachi Province about is $50. Also add in any money for your planned purchases (whatever you know you need but decide you will be buying once you get to Cambodia), and for any vacation time. Weekly costs for me are around $20.00 US. Those that like to make the most of their weekends will spend a little more. The currency of Cambodia is called the Riel, but the US dollar is accepted just about everywhere. The conversion is 4000 Riel for 1 US dollar.


We had a birthday party this past weekend for Nev (picture is from party – Happy Birthday Nev), one of our volunteers. To celebrate we had a barbeque. A bunch of us will also be going to the US Embassy this weekend to celebrate the Fourth of July on Sunday July 6th. Don’t quite understand that but hey, a party thrown by the US government seems too good to pass up. Hope it lives up to everyone’s expectations.
A few occurrences of the stomach bug have manifested themselves at the volunteer house. So far though, those affected have bounced back fairly quickly.
Elections are scheduled for the end of July. These occur once every 5 years. Cambodians refrain from discussing the elections, as they prefer to keep their political views to themselves. Based on the current political climate of Cambodia though, you can’t blame them.

One of my students is teaching me Khmer. He’s really an interesting person. He is very into learning English and keeps coming up with all these slang phrases for me to translate, some I’ve never even heard of.
This past weekend I visited the Toul Sleng Museum, which serves as a memorial and testimonial of the atrocities carried out by the Khmer Rouge.


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